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The Kindergarten Experience

Armstrong & Bradfield

The below information is about the kindergarten experience at Armstrong & Bradfield.
Click here to learn about registering for kindergarten. 
Click here to learn about kindergarten "readiness."


Attendance

Students are tardy after 8am. After 9:30am, students counted absent. Students are required to be in attendance at least 90% of the school year (MAX of 18 absences). These days can go quickly when there are illnesses during the year, a trip, family emergencies, etc. Please keep this in mind when planning activities where students will not be in school. 


Class Size 

Class size varies based on enrollment. Maximum is 22-24 kindergarten students per teacher (state waiver required for anything over 22). 

Armstrong has 4 kindergarten classes...  4 teachers and 1 teacher's assistant. 

Bradfield has 5 kindergarten classes...  5 teachers and 1 teacher's assistant. 


Attire

  • Tennis shoes are necessary on P.E. days. Children attend P.E. 4 days a week. 
  • Medium sized backpack, big enough to hold a standard size folder. 
  • Label all backpacks and lunchboxes on the outside. Luggage tags are a great way to do this.  Be sure to include your child's first and last name. 
  • For Kindergartners, send an extra pair of clothes for their lockers in case they get dirty and need to be changed. 
  • Spirit Days: Wear your school gear (t-shirts, cheerleading outfits, bows,  etc.... anything school related). 
Armstrong: Every Friday
Bradfield: Every Wednesday

Note: Spirit wear ordered during back to school sign-up will usually be available in October. You can purchase additional spirit wear through the website, during pop-up shopping events, or when in-person events resume.

  • Dress Up Days: The school and kindergarten will have dress up days throughout the year. 
Armstrong:

Kindergarten will dress up for Halloween (book character costume parade). The school will also have dress up days during "Red Ribbon Week" and "December Days," where the kids wear fun socks, a certain color, etc. 

Bradfield:

Kindergarten will dress up for Halloween and Fairy Tale Day. The school will also have dress up days such as international dot day (teaching kids to "make their mark"), patriotic attire, favorite teams/colleges and "Red Ribbon Week".  


School Day - Arrival/Departure

School begins: 7:50am. Tardy bell rings at 8am. 

Early Dismissal: 1:00pm

Full Day Dismissal: 3:15pm

Kindergarten meets 5 days a week.  Students can arrive as early as 7:30am. After-school care/programming is available from 3:00 to 6:00pm daily for additional charge. 

Kindergartners must be picked up at the end of the school day by a parent or caregiver.

Pets are not allowed on campus during drop-off or pick-up.  


Carpool

Armstrong families will receive 2 cardboard signs per child at Meet the Teacher, additional tags are available for free at the front office.

Click HERE for Armstrong carpool queue lane and map.  


Bradfield families will receive two carpool tags at Meet the Teacher.  Students who need additional carpool tags may request one through the front office. 

Click HERE for Bradfield carpool and traffic map. 


Lunch

Kindergartners have the option of purchasing a hot or cold lunch from the cafeteria or can bring their own lunch. Due to COVID, parents are no longer able to join children for lunch.  

To view the lunch menu, view the Nutrislice website or download the app,  iOS or Googleplay

To add cash to your account, follow the instructions below:

  • Log in to Skyward Family Access (through a computer, not the mobile app), click "Food Service" and then click "Make A Payment." You will be sent to eFunds For Schools, where you can log in with your Skyward user name and password (use lowercase characters only.)
  • Add money to your child's account through eFunds For Schools. The average daily lunch price is between $4-$6. 
  • Each time you deposit money, a transaction fee will be assessed. If you pay with a direct deposit from your bank, the total fee will be $1. A slide fee scale will be used for credit card payments in $5 increments for every $150 spent. 
  • You can receive alerts when your child's lunch account balance is running low. Manage the alerts through your E-Funds for Schools account, located under the "Low Meal Balance Notification" tab. 


Snack

Armstrong: Child may bring a peanut/tree nut free snack and a water bottle for daily snack. Items will stay in backpack until snack time.

Bradfield:  Kindergarten - snacks for kindergarteners are provided to the students by parents. Parents will sign up to bring 10 days of snacks for the entire class through VSP.  1st-4th Grade - students bring a nut free snack on their own. 


Extended Day / After Care

The Extended School Day (ESD) program is designed to provide an informal, enjoyable school experience for families needing supervised care in a group setting for their children after normal school hours. ESD is available for students in kindergarten through fourth grade at HPISD elementary schools, and fifth through eighth grade at MIS/HPMS. 

The program operates on regular school days from school dismissal until 6 p.m., and is staffed by HPISD employees. Nutritious snacks are served daily, and homework time and indoor and outdoor play are provided.   

For more information, including fees and signup process, please call the Academy for Lifelong Learning at 214-780-3380. 

After Care FAQs:

  • Is after care available on early release days? YES!
  • Is after care available on school holidays? No, it's not available when the school is closed. 
  • Do the kids like it? YES! The kids LOVE it. 
  • Do they work on homework with the kids? No, they do not help kids with homework, but if your child has self-discipline - they can do it on their own/bring iPads, etc. 
  • What do they do while there? They eat snacks and color right after school. Then, go outside and play on the playground. 


Supply Shop

The supply shop is a fundraising program ran by the PTA where students can buy additional items beyond the BSSU supplies that will be provided to them in their classroom.  


Field Trips & Special Events (Many of these on hold due to COVID)

Kindergartners will get to participate in field trips and special events. The below is an example. 

  • Fire Station Field Trip 
  • Halloween/Storybook Character Parade (dress in costume)
  • Family Picnics
  • Carnival (Bradfield is in the fall, Armstrong is in the spring)
  • Fairy Tale Day & Parade
  • Great Friends Day
  • Polar Express Day 
  • Class Holiday Party
  • 100th Day of School 
  • Valentine's Day Party 
  • President's Day Parade 
  • Texas Day (dress in Texas attire)
  • Zoo Field Trip 
  • Butterfly Guy
  • Field Day

Email Newsletters

Be sure to subscribe for email communications during Back to School Sign Up or through your Skyward account. Learn more here

The school sends weekly communications about school activities. Teachers will also send a weekly bulletin to parents about what your child is learning in their class, and Room Moms/Dads will also email parents about upcoming events.  

HPISD also sends emails regarding district updates and information.   

Incoming families will be added to the list around the 2nd week of school. 

If you have any issues with email subscription (to either the HPISD or school email lists), please email Jacqueline Moran at MoranJ@HPISD.org

Apps & Text Messages

There are LOTS and LOTS of Apps! Some are handier than others. We've listed them in order of what we think is most useful. 


  1.  Security Alerts from HPISD from School Messenger

  2.  Messages from Bradfield Principal from Remind

  3.  Messages from Bradfield Kindergarten Lead from Remind

  4.  Lunch Menus from Nutrislice 

  5.  Directory App  

  6.  Yearbook App

  7.  Volunteer App

  8.  HPISD Skyward App 


#1 HPISD Alerts via School Messenger

You will be asked if want to subscribe to security alerts for your school. After that initial request,  new families receive an option text message mid-July.  

#2 and #3 Text Messages from Bradfield Principal and Kindergarten Lead via Remind App

For Bradfield families, more information will be sent at the beginning of the school year to sign up for Remind messages. 

#4. Lunch Menu App

Download the Nutruslice app,  iOS or Googleplay

#5 Directory listings via Directory App

Armstrong and Bradfield both utilize the Directory Spot app for directory listings, just like the ABPA does. Once downloaded, additional school lists will be added to your account without you needing to download again. Click HERE for directions on how to download. 

#6 Yearbook App

Bradfield utilizes the Balfour ImageShare app as a way to submit images from your class throughout the year. This ensures that every student is well represented in the Bradfield yearbook.  

Download on iOS or GooglePlay
    • From Welcome page, click "Create Account"
    • Enter first name, last name, email
    • Enter Bradfield's Project Number - 821120
    • Check "Accept Terms and Conditions"
    • Click "Next"
    • Enter Confirmation Code sent to you via email 
    • Create your own username and password
    • Click " Take me to Image Share"
    • There is no need to enter an upload code, just proceed to Save
    • To upload images, click "Choose from Gallery"
    • Select photo to upload
    • If possible, provide the names of the students in the photo. If larger group shots, please identify the teacher and/or grade level. 
    • Please briefly describe the Bradfield event or activity


#7 Volunteer App via Volunteer Scheduler Pro

Once you have set up your VSP account at their website and have been processed, download the app... iOS or GooglePlay
Keep scrolling to review the Volunteer section below! (Note, we think it's easier to manage your volunteer assignments via their website).


#8 HPISD App  

Download the "Highland Park ISD" app in iOS or GooglePlay or  search for “Highland Park ISD” 

You can access:

  • The latest news and announcements from the district
  • A staff directory that includes phone numbers and email addresses, including the option to “favorite” staff members for quick access
  • An activities calendar, which includes the option to sort events by campus
  • A YouTube section, which features videos produced by HPISD
  • Skyward access - view your child's grades, assignments, class schedules and lunch account balances



Social Media for HPISD, Armstrong and Bradfield 

INSTAGRAM:

YOUTUBE:

TWITTER:


Volunteer Opportunities -- Most volunteer opportunities are on hold due to Covid. However, Cafeteria volunteer opportunities remains a popular way to see your kid(s) in school! 

  • Cafeteria: Monthly commitment (ex: every 3rd Wed), 10:20am until around 1:10pm. Serving Line & Cashier. VSP sign-up.
We recommend coordinating with friends to sign up on the same day. It's always more fun with friends! 
  • Room Mom: Two per class. Request interest via a form to the Room Mom Coordinator for consideration.   
  • Virtual / Mystery Reader  (Due to Covid, Mystery readers are virtual)

Visitors MUST provide a government issued photo ID and obtain a visitor's badge. 

Volunteers are REQUIRED to complete a background check, sign in with the office and wear the badge while on campus. Background checks can be submitted thru the Back to School Sign Up or through the front office. Annual volunteer badges will be available for those who have completed the background check. 

Both schools use the Volunteer Scheduler Pro ("VSP") to coordinate volunteer activities. 

New Families can sign up after July 1st. 

  • Go to the VSP page for your school
Bradfield VSP
Armstrong VSP
  • Click "Sign Up Now"
  • Complete your Profile/General Information
  • Select the volunteer jobs and shifts you want to work*
  • Click "Submit" 
  • A username/password will be automatically assigned to you once your enrollment has processed. Once processed, you can click "Forgot your username or password?" link and VSP will email your username and allow you to reset your password. 
  • Once you have set up the account and have been processed, download the app... iOS or GooglePlay
*NOTE: All shifts for Cafeteria, Library and Supply Shop are recurring. They take place on the same day each month of the school year (ie, 1st Monday). When selecting a shift, you only need to choose the shift in one month on the calendar. VSP will process your request and schedule all of your recurring shifts for you. Your selected shifts WILL NOT automatically appear as recurring until your request has been processed. You will receive an email confirmation when your requests are processed. 


Kindergarten High Frequency Words ("Snap Words") 

Kindergarten students will focus on learning high frequency words throughout the year, see list here.

These lists include the most common English words. Many of them cannot be sounded out and must be learned as sight words. Learning them in isolation does not make a fluent reader; however, it can help boost a child's confidence. Those who are able to read and write these words have a good base for beginning reading and writing.  

Only lists 1-3 need to be mastered in order to advance to first grade. 


Curriculum

HPISD Curriculum can be found HERE

Teacher/Parent Guide For The Kindergarten Report Card   (Guide to look at expectations over the year... 1st nine wks vs 4th nine wks)


Writing & Reading

  • Click HERE to see HPISD kindergarten ELA curriculum. 
  • Students and parents are asked to read for 20 minutes, review letters and snap words daily.  
  • High Frequency Words: see above 
(ABPA Parent Note: the first 5 lists are the hardest/slowest to learn. At around list 6, the kids get the hang of it and learning the lists is much easier and faster.)
  • Library: students check out a book and return it weekly.
  • Star of the Week: Each week a student will present a montage about themselves and answer questions from the class.
  • Reading Buddies
  • Book Publishing
  • One School, One Book 
    • In the second half of the year, the District OSOB Committee selects one book and each family reads it at home together... known as "One School, One Book". The committee usually picks a chapter book and it goes home with a bookmark for the reading pace. There are trivia questions on the announcements to motivate kids and then there will be an end of book project. This is all optional, but in the past there has been lots of participation.
    • The school will hold an assembly in January to announce the book to the kids. Parents do not attend the assembly. 

    Math
    • Click HERE to see HPISD kindergarten math curriculum


    Science
    • Click HERE to see HPISD kindergarten science curriculum.
    • Experiments and wondering "why", "what if", and "let's find out" activities are an important part of the school day. Students will learn to classify, identify, observe, describe, record and predict. 


    Social Studies
      • Click HERE to see HPISD kindergarten social studies curriculum.
      • The primary purpose is to help children develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an independent world. 

      Art & Music
      • Click HERE (art) and HERE (music) to see HPISD kindergarten art and music curriculum.
      • In Art, students rely on their perceptions of the environment, developed through increasing visual awareness and sensitivity to surroundings, memory, imagination, and life experiences, as a source for creative artworks. They express their thoughts and ideas creatively, while challenging their imagination, fostering reflective thinking and developing disciplined effort and problem-solving skills.
      • In Music, students develop their intellect and refine their emotions, understanding the cultural and creative nature of musical artistry and making connections among music, the other arts, technology and other aspects of social life. 


      Spanish
      • Click HERE to see HPISD kindergarten Spanish curriculum. 


      Physical Education & Health
      • Click HERE (P.E.) and HERE (health) to see HPISD kindergarten P.E. and health curriculum. 
      • In P.E., students learn basic body control while moving in a variety of settings. Students become aware of strength, endurance and flexibility in different parts of their bodies and begin to learn ways to increase health-related fitness.
      • In Health, students are taught basic factors that contribute to health literacy. They learn about their bodies and the behaviors necessary to protect them and keep them healthy, and they also learn how to seek help from parents or other trusted adults. 





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